Texas Sales Tax Exemption Certificate

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Texas Sales And Use Tax Exemption Certificate

How to Fill Out the SST and MTC Exemption Certificate Forms

A sales tax exemption certificate can be used by businesses who are making purchases that are exempt from the Texas sales tax. You can download a PDF of the Texas Sales and Use Tax Exemption Certificate on this page. For other Texas sales tax exemption certificates, go here.

This certificate is used to claim an exemption of sales tax on items that are purchased by a business from a seller. The buyer and the seller must both complete this certificate.

What Is A Texas Resale Certificate

A Texas resale certificate is a tax-exempt form that permits a business to purchase goods from a supplier, that are intended to be resold without the reseller having to pay sales tax on them. It allows suppliers to know that you are legally allowed to purchase the goods without them having to charge you sales tax, since you will be reselling the goods and collecting sales tax from the consumer . There is no limitation on where a reseller permit can be used as long as the seller accepts it. Also, any items can be purchased using the permit assuming that the items will be resold.

Always Exempt Purchases Exemption Certificate Not Required

The following items are always exempt, so you do not have to give retailers an exemption certificate or any other type of documentation:

  • seeds and annual plants, the products of which are commonly recognized as food for humans or animals
  • seeds and annual plants usually only raised to be sold in the regular course of business
  • cattle, sheep, swine, goats
  • chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, guineas, squabs ostriches, rheas or emus
  • horses, ponies, mules and donkeys
  • medications, tonics, restoratives or other therapeutic preparations purchased with a prescription from a veterinarian
  • feed for farm animals, ranch animals and wild game, including oats, hay, chicken scratch, wild bird seed and deer corn.

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A Word Of Caution Regarding Resale Certificates

Here are a few things you should keep in mind as you continue your resale certificate journey.

Suppliers are not very knowledgeable on what resale certificate documentation they can accept. Weve seen suppliers deny out-of-state resale certificates in states that accept out-of-state resale certificates, and require their customers to register for an in-state sales tax permit. If this is happening to you, you can either show them this blog post or you can just bite the bullet and do what they say. Thankfully, this is not the case with the majority of suppliers.

Resale exemption certificates are typically only good for one kind of use: reselling products. Many states have special forms for the different types of exemption use. Note that exemptions claimed on incorrect forms may be considered invalid.

In many states, resale certificates eventually expire. This means that you may need to fill the form out again every one to five years. Each state varies regarding resale certificate expiration. It is your responsibility to keep track of the expiration dates of your resale certificates.

How To Register For A Texas Sellers Permit


You can register for a Texas Business Tax License online through the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. To apply, youll need to provide the Texas Comptroller with certain information about your business, including but not limited to:

  • Business name, address, and contact information
  • Federal EIN number
  • Date business activities began or will begin
  • Projected monthly sales

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Taxable And Exempt Shipping Charges

Texas sales tax may apply to charges for shipping, delivery, freight, and postage. Charges for handling are generally taxable. The general rule of thumb in Texas is that if the sale is taxable, transportation and related delivery charges incurred both before and after the sale are taxable, even if stated separately from the sales price. If the sale is exempt, related delivery charges are generally exempt.If a shipment contains both taxable and exempt items, related delivery charges may be either taxable or exempt, depending on the ratio of exempt and taxable goods.Tax may also apply to drop shipping scenarios. If you use drop shipping to deliver items to customers in Texas, you may be responsible for collecting and reporting tax. However, if you pay a third party to deliver or ship items at the customers request, separately stated charges are generally not taxable.The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts recommends keeping clear invoices and records for all transactions. Records must reflect the total gross receipts from all sales, rentals, leases, taxable services, and taxable labor, as well as the total purchases of taxable items. Additional records must be kept to validate deductions, exclusions, or exemptions.There are exceptions to almost every rule with sales tax, and the same is true for shipping and handling charges. Specific questions on shipping in Texas and sales tax should be taken directly to a tax professional familiar with Texas tax laws.

The Utility Refund & Savings

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In Texas, the exemption is approved, the business will receive a refund on the portion of overpaid tax theyve paid for the past 48 months and also receive an exemption on future utility usage, based off the exemption percentage identified.

Business in Texas? Reach out to SmartSave and start saving today.

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Are Services Shipping Installation Etc Taxable In Texas

The taxability of transactions involving services, shipping, and installation of tangible goods can be slightly complicated with various laws applying to slightly different situations. To learn more about how these transactions, and other more complicated situations, are subject to the Texas sales tax see the Texas sales taxability FAQ page.

Discounts Penalties Interest And Refunds

Tax Responsibilities for Contractors Working with Exempt Organizations
  • Permitted sales taxpayers can claim a discount of 0.5 percent of the amount of tax timely reported and paid.
  • Sales taxpayers who prepay can claim 0.5 percent for timely filing and paying, plus 1.25 percent for prepaying. See Prepayment Discounts, Extensions and Amendments FAQs.
  • A $50 penalty is assessed on each report filed after the due date.
  • If tax is paid 1-30 days after the due date, a 5 percent penalty is assessed.
  • If tax is paid over 30 days after the due date, a 10 percent penalty is assessed.

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Timber Exemption Timber Machines And Timber Trailers

A timber machine or trailer is exempt from motor vehicle sales and use tax if it is used at least 80 percent of the time in timber operations.

Timber machine a self-propelled motor vehicle specially adapted to perform a specialized function for use primarily in timber operations, such as land preparation, planting, maintenance or harvesting of commercial timber that will be sold in the regular course of business. An example is a cab chassis with an articulating arm for moving logs.

The term timber machine does not include:

  • field service vehicles or
  • self-propelled motor vehicles specifically designed or adapted to transport timber or timber products, including those designed to transport cargo and adapted with a cargo-loading device.

Timber trailer a trailer or semitrailer designed for and used primarily in a timber operation.

How To Use Sales Tax Exemption Certificates In Texas

A sales tax exemption certificate is a form you can fill out yourself certifying that you meet the qualifications outlined for making sales-tax-free purchases. You will need to present this certificate to the vendor from whom you are making the exempt purchase – it is up to the vendor to verify that you are indeed qualified to make a tax-exempt purchase.

The state of Texas provides certain forms to be used when you wish to purchase tax-exempt items such as prescription medicines.The “Resale Certificate” can be utilized when purchasing items specifically for resale.The “Exemption Certificate” is utilized for the majority of tax exempt purchases.The forms can be downloaded on this page. To apply the certificate, the buyer must first present the seller with their written certificate, which legally documents the exemption. The certificate should include the date it was created, the signature of the buyer or an employee or agent who signed on behalf of the buyer, both the seller’s and buyer’s addresses and names, the legal basis of the exemption being utilized, the buyer’s tax registration or business license number, and a description of the merchandise that the buyer wishes to purchase.

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Agricultural Exemption Farm Machines And Farm Trailers

A farm machine or trailer is exempt from motor vehicle sales and use tax if it is used at least 80 percent of the time in one of the following ways:

  • to produce grass, food for people, feed for animals or agricultural products for sale or

Farm machine a self-propelled motor vehicle specifically adapted for, and primarily used to:

  • apply plant food, fertilizer and agricultural chemicals in producing crops or
  • to distribute livestock feed in raising livestock.

A self-propelled motor vehicle designed or adapted to primarily transport people or agricultural products is not a farm machine.

Farm trailer a trailer or semitrailer designed for and used primarily on a farm or ranch.

The term farm trailer does not include a motor vehicle designed for sleeping, dressing, lounging, restroom use or meal preparation, even if the vehicle is used to transport livestock or agricultural products.

A farm trailer used more than 20 percent of the time to transport livestock or property to and from competitions, shows, rodeos or other similar uses does not qualify for exemption.

Pick-up truck a pick-up truck is taxable, even if it is registered with farm plates.

An Overview Of Texas Sales And Use Tax

Texas sales and use tax resale certificate instructions

Sales tax is a tax paid to state and local tax authorities in Texas for the sale of certain goods and services. First adopted in 1961 and known as the “Limited Sales and Use Tax”, sales tax is most commonly collected from the buyer at the point of sale. Municiple sales tax was enacted in 1967.

As a business owner selling taxable goods or services, you act as an agent of the state of Texas by collecting tax from purchasers and passing it along to the appropriate state or local tax authority. As of March 2019, sales and use tax in Texas is administered by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts.

Any sales tax collected from customers belongs to the state of Texas, not you. Its your responsibility to manage the taxes you collect to remain in compliance with state and local tax laws. Failure to do so can lead to penalties and interest charges.

Use tax is similar to sales tax, but applied where goods are consumed rather then where purchased.

In most cases, sales tax is collected at the point of purchase. However, there are a number of cases when this may not be the case:

In each of the above cases, a use tax may now be required to collect sales tax. In such instances, the tax burdon shifts to the consumer who is required to

Use tax laws in Texas apply to goods purchased out of the country but consumed in Texas.

To summarize, use tax is due when goods are purchased tax free by a merchant and then converted for use, consumption, or enjoyment by that same merchant.

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Motor Vehicle Rental Tax Exemption

When claiming exemption from motor vehicle gross rental receipts tax when you rent qualifying farm or timber machines trailers, you must enter your Ag/Timber Number and expiration date on Form 14-305, Motor Vehicle Rental Tax Exemption Certificate .

Motor fuel is taxed when it is removed from the terminal rack. The tax is included in the price you paid at the pump. You may qualify for a refund on your gasoline purchases, and you may be able to purchase dyed diesel fuel tax free.

You cannot use your agricultural and timber registration number to purchase motor fuel tax free.

Using A Third Party To File Returns

To save time and avoid costly errors, many businesses outsource their sales and use tax filing to an accountant, bookkeeper, or sales tax automation company like Avalara. This is a normal business practice that can save business owners time and help them steer clear of costly mistakes due to inexperience and a lack of deep knowledge about Missouri sales tax code.

Avalara Returns for Small Business is an affordable third-party solution that helps business owners simplify the sales tax returns process and stay focused on growing their business. Learn how automating the sales tax returns process could help your business. See our offer to try Returns for Small Business free for up to 60 days. Terms and conditions apply.

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Sourcing Sales Tax In Texas: Which Rate To Collect

In some states, sales tax rates, rules, and regulations are based on the location of the seller and the origin of the sale . In others, sales tax is based on the location of the buyer and the destination of the sale . Texas does a little of each.The origin address is used first. However, if the local tax rate from the origin address is less than 2 percent, the destination address is used to apply additional local tax up to the state-mandated 2-percent limit.For example:

  • If an order is placed in person at a place of business in Texas, the rate is based on where the order is placed
  • If an order is fulfilled at a sellers place of business in Texas, the rate is based on where the order is fulfilled
  • If an order isnt fulfilled at a sellers place of business in Texas, but is received at a sellers place of business in Texas, the rate is based on where the order is received
  • If an order isnt received or fulfilled at a sellers place of business in Texas, but is fulfilled at a Texas location, the rate is based on where the order is shipped or delivered
  • If the order is received, fulfilled, and delivered from a location outside of Texas, and the seller doesnt have nexus with Texas, no tax is due

For additional information, see Local Sales and Use Tax Collection A Guide for Sellers.

State Tax Exemption Rules And Regulations

What Are The Differences between a Resale Certificate and a Sales Tax Permit?

Through the Department of States Diplomatic Tax Exemption Program, the U.S. Government meets its obligations under Article 34 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and Article 49 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, as well as other similar treaties and agreements, to provide exemption from state and local sales, restaurant, lodging/occupancy and other similar taxes charged to customers.

Generally, states, territories, the District of Columbia and localities develop their own statutes, and regulations concerning the manner in which vendors may grant such tax exemptions to foreign missions and their members.

The information below is provided to better assist vendors with understanding the applicable state and local rules and regulations concerning this issue. This listing is not exhaustive of all such statutes/regulations. Therefore, if a vendor does not find information specific to their location, they are encouraged to contact the Department of States Office of Foreign Missions or the appropriate tax authority. OFMs Headquarters, located in Washington, DC, can be reached 8:00am to 5:00pm by telephone at 895-3500, option 2 or by electronic mail at .

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What Is A Resale Certificate

A resale certificate is a tax form that you can provide to your supplier in order to purchase inventory tax-free . This means that if you have the proper documentation, you can avoid paying sales tax on your purchases which can save you a good chunk of change.

Before you get started, you should note that many states will allow you to use an out-of-state resale certificate to complete their documentation. But there are 12 states which require that you register for a sales tax permit in their state to get a resale certificate.

Sales Tax Exemptions In Texas

In Texas, certain items may be exempt from the sales tax to all consumers, not just tax-exempt purchasers.

An example of an item which is exempt from Texas sales tax are items which were specifically purchased for resale.

Many states have special, lowered sales tax rates for certain types of staple goods – such as groceries, clothing and medicines. Restaurant meals may also have a special sales tax rate. Here are the special category rates for Texas:


OTC Drugs


These categories may have some further qualifications before the special rate applies, such as a price cap on clothing items. Groceries are generally defined as “unprepared food”, while pre-prepared food may be subject to the restaurant food tax rate.

Candy and soda may be included or excluded from any preferential tax rate depending on whether or not the state considers them to be a “grocery”:

is NOT considered a groceryis NOT considered a grocery

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Free State Audit Risk Guide

See which states pose the greatest risk to your business.

State-by-State Audit Risk Percentages

Does Idaho require registration with the state for a resale certificate?

Idaho does not require registration with the state for a resale certificate.

How can you get a resale certificate in Idaho?

To get a resale certificate in Idaho, you will need to fill out the Idaho Sales Tax Resale or Exemption Certificate .

How often should this certificate be renewed?

A blanket certificate in Idaho does not expire unless it is revoked in writing.

Where can you go to learn more?

Idaho Admin. Rules contains the rules regarding sales for resale. The Idaho State Tax Commission also has published some information on purchases by retailers.

A Quick Note On Multistate Resale Certificates

State Sales Tax: Texas State Sales Tax Webfile

Before you begin downloading each individual resale certificate, you should keep in mind that there are two multi-state resale certificates that you can use. These forms will allow you the ease of providing resale certificates for multiple states at once.

The Streamlined Sales Tax Governing Board has created the Streamlined Sales Tax Exemption Certificate which can be used by anyone for all of their member states.

The Multistate Tax Commission has created the Uniform Sales & Use Tax Exemption Certificate which can be used for some of their member states. Please consult the link for a complete list of the states that accept the Uniform Sales & Use Tax Exemption Certificate, subject to notes on pages 2-4 of that document.

If you are using either of these multi-state resale certificate forms, you need to pay special attention to the instructions on completing the form, as well as what each state will allow.

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